Book Review: P. N. Elrod’s Hex Appeal

Posted July 12, 2012 by Kathy Davie in Book Reviews

This book came from the library, and I will never give you less than an honest review, no matter its source. I do provide informational and purchase links to make it more convenient for you to access the book. I also receive a percentage of the sale if you use one of my links to buy it. And that's not enough money to be less than truthful *grin*.

Book Review: P. N. Elrod’s Hex Appeal

Hex Appeal

by Carole Nelson Douglas, Carrie Vaughn, Erica Hayes, Ilona Andrews, Jim Butcher, Lori Handeland, P.N. Elrod, Rachel Caine, Simon R. Green


Series: Bigfoot Trilogy #3, Delilah Street #5.1, Dresden Files #11.4, Holly and Andy #2, Kate Daniels #5.6, Kitty Norville #4.5, Nightside #x.5, Phoenix Chronicles #x.5, Shadowfae Chronicles #4.5, Vampire Files Universe: Ellinghaus and Goldfarb #x.5

Other books by this author that I've reviewed include Undone, Unknown, Dates from Hell, Ghost Town, Something From the Nightside, Mean Streets, Changes, Must Love Hellhounds, Agents of Light and Darkness, Chicks Kick Butt, Nightingale's Lament, Paths Not Taken, Sharper Than a Serpent's Tooth, Side Jobs, Ghost Story, Rachel Caine, Bite Club, Hell to Pay, Dark and Stormy Knights, Just Another Judgement Day, The Good, the Bad, and the Uncanny, A Hard Day's Knight, Angels of Darkness, Devil's Bargain, Devil's Due, Hexed, Fate's Edge, Hex and the City, The Unnatural Inquirer, The Bride Wore Black Leather, Last Breath, Unseen, Home Improvement: Undead Edition, Kitty Goes to Washington, Kitty and the Midnight Hour, "Kitty Meets the Band", Aftertaste, Unbroken, Kitty and the Silver Bullet, Man with the Golden Torc, Black Dawn, Working Stiff, Daemons are Forever, An Apple for the Creature, Kitty and the Dead Man’s Hand, Two Weeks' Notice, The Spy Who Haunted Me, "The Devil You Know", Kitty Raises Hell, Kitty's House of Horrors, From Hell with Love, Bitter Blood, Kitty Goes to War, Kitty's Big Trouble, Welcome to the Jungle, Kitty's Greatest Hits, Kiss of Death, Kitty Steals the Show, For Heaven's Eyes Only, Live and Let Drood, Kitty Rocks the House, Magic Bites, Fall of Night, Casino Infernale, Daylighters, Blue Moon Rising, Kicking It, Kitty in the Underworld, Dangerous Women, Storm Front, Tales of the Hidden World, Grave Peril, Summer Knight, Prince of Shadows, Fool Moon, Magic Bleeds, Blood and Honor, Cold Days, Skin Game, Blood Rites, Death Masks, Proven Guilty, White Night, Small Favor, Burn For Me, Night Shift, Magic Shifts, From a Drood to a Kill, Ink and Bone, Paper and Fire, The Dark Side of the Road, Burn for Me, Shadowed Souls, Magic Binds, Dead Man Walking, Very Important Corpses.

Genres: Fantasy, Paranormal, Urban Fantasy

This Paperback has 356 pages and was published by St. Martin's Griffin on June 5, 2012. Discover more about it at Goodreads. You can also buy it at Amazon

An anthology of nine short stories revolving around a central theme of magic.


“Retribution Clause” (side story to Kate Daniels, 5.6)
“Bigfoot on Campus” (Dresden Files, 11.4; Bigfoot Trilogy, 3)
“Holly’s Balm” (Holly and Andy, 2)
“Snow Job” (Delilah Street, 5.1)
“Outside the Box” (Vampire Files Universe: Ellinghaus and Goldfarb, x.5)
“How Do You Feel?” (Nightside, x.5 (Walker is still in charge))
“There Will be Demons” (Phoenix Chronicles, x.5)
“Cherry Kisses” (Shadowfae Chronicles, 4.5)
“Arcane Art of Misdirection” (Kitty Norville, 4.5)

The Stories

Ilona Andrews‘ “Retribution Clause” finds Adam Talford (or Talbot) and his partner, Siroun (frost giant and Saiman’s cousin) are sent to fulfill the retribution clause in Mrs. Sobanto’s life insurance. Seems Mr. Sobanto has been a bad, bad boy.

An interesting story with a unique clause. I can think of a few people who would want such a thing.

Jim Butcher‘s “Bigfoot on Campus” takes place several years after “I was a Teenage Bigfoot” and finds Harry checking up on Irwin for his dad, River Shoulders. That boy just can’t stay out of trouble. True to form (for a college boy), it’s girl trouble.

Rachel Caine‘s “Holly’s Balm” is sweet and slightly gruesome with Holly Anne Caldwell, a resurrection witch, helping the police find a serial re-killer. A very touching moment with Andy Toland, her revived gunslingin’ boyfriend.

Their first appearance was in Strange Brew: “Death Warmed Over”.

Carole Nelson Douglas‘ “Snow Job” finds Christophe, a.k.a., Snow, a.k.a., Cocaine, and the CinSims in trouble due to a difference of opinion Christophe had with the original Lilith.

It’s definitely an interesting series Douglas has going. I just wish Delilah wasn’t such a bitchy drama queen.

P.N. Elrod‘s “Outside the Box” was a switch for me. Seems the Company is a vamp-run organization that keeps all the vampires in line and someone out there doesn’t like it. Excellent.

Simon R. Green‘s “How Do You Feel?” is sad and revenge-filled for Dead Boy. He finally tracks down those responsible for his original death and we learn how and why he died. We also get to ride along with him on his quest with his futuristic car, Silicon Lily.

Lori Handeland‘s “There Will be Demons” is just plain mean. Summer Bartholomew finally meets the man she’s been dreaming of for millennia. She even manages to save his life despite the centuries of dreams in which he’s died. Only to find it’s her love that’s a dream.

Erica Hayes‘ “Cherry Kisses” is too cute as Lena Falco, troublemaker extraordinaire almost makes nice when she and Ethan Benford partner up to invade Hell to steal a pendant. I must check out this series!

Carrie Vaughn‘s “Arcane Art of Misdirection” is a magical twist on card counting in Vegas and Julie, the croupier, insists on tagging along after Odysseus Grant, a magician intent on finding the guilty party.

The Cover and Title

The cover is red. Red in every imaginable shade and texture…creating a wall that looks like it’s located in Hell. It doesn’t help when the Hex is made up of flaming letters! Just to liven things up, a long-haired brunette in a black PVC mini dress with a deep cut-out neckline is leaning up against a corner of that wall. Wouldn’t surprise me a bit to learn she’s a demon…!

The title is a bit of a catch-all, as all the stories are about magic in some shape or form. It’s an anthology with a lot of Hex Appeal.

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